Type designers, is this a great idea or a terrible idea: instead of traditional ligatures like f_i, sub the f with an alternate f design, causing the same visual result. But! It can participate in kerning, unlike f_i
A few more examples (rf, rt, fi) with neutral tracking
It seems to work pretty well across weights and tracking adjustment. For the light weight I essentially use a regular-shaped f (since the play from the stem thickness is almost zero.)
Can do something like this for the thin f to make it a little less weird, but still not extend the horizontal stroke (which does create an awkward gap for some weight-and-tracking combinations)
A few more examples
10:27 PM · Apr 23, 2023
Tiny improvements to kerning can have such big impact. Designers normally track big titles like these manually (when you can), but it's nice to have a good, high quality starting point. Shown here is the default spacing, with no tracking/letter-spacing adjustments. Before/after.
For kerning display type I like to look at it really tight.
Since the contrast is so high, you can more easily spot little issues that are hard to find when the letters have "normal" spacing.
Notice how it's much easier to spot the "Fa" space imbalance in the tight versions here.
Each weight of Inter has a little different relative spacing. The thin weights has more of a airy, "hair in the wind" feeling while the heavy weights feel more like "heavy metal machines."
Here are a few weights shown with uniform tracking.
Another example, with uniform tracking and with tracking adjusted per weight.
Should you tighten up letters in titles as much as in these examples? Usually it's a bad idea, unless you are confident in your ability to judge the "right amount" of space in between letters.
Remember that we read text not letter by letter, but by the shape of words and visual cues of certain letters (e.g. ascenders & descenders in certain words.) Here in this example, the middle example is easy to read while the bottom one requires looking at each letter
5:50 PM · Apr 29, 2023